This is easily the nerdiest thing that I’ve ever done.
Fair warning, if you’re nuts enough to read this speculative treatment (aka. glorified fan fiction) it’s rambling, overly long, overly detailed and will most likely be NOTHING like the real thing. I just thought I’d share it because it was a blast to write and it might get us thinking creatively about what we’d like to see in the real film.
A few general notes about the film:
- I’ve worked out the runtime to be roughly 2 hours and 45 minutes (the same length as The Dark Knight Rises)
- The central theme of the film is death and how it shapes the lives and identities of all it touches.
- This means that the tone I’m aiming for is The Return of the King meets Empire Strikes Back. I want Infinity War to feel like a true culmination of everything that’s come before it. Every Marvel movie has lead to this one.
- In order to write this, I had to speculate WILDLY on what I think might happen in Thor Ragnarok:
– At the end of Ragnarok, Odin dies and Thor becomes king.
– Banner remains at his side as his right hand man.
– The Soul Stone (formerly possessed by Hela) is being kept in Asgard.
– Loki is banished from Asgard but he is able to steal the Tesseract on his way out.
– In the post credits, Loki brings the Tesseract to Thanos and begs for his forgiveness
With that out of the way, let’s get started!
I’ve included every character that Marvel has confirmed for this film (which is a lot), so I’ve had to keep the story as simple as possible. We can essentially summarise the entire movie with three points:
- Thanos creates a huge distraction which forces the galaxy to respond, leaving the Infinity Stones unprotected.
- The Guardians of the Galaxy go to the Avengers for help but find the heroes of Earth fighting amongst themselves.
- Thanos retrieves the Infinity Stones and comes to Earth.
1. The Invasion of Knowhere
We open on Knowhere, the colossal space station housed in the skull of a dead Celestial being (first seen in Guardians of the Galaxy). Our story begins deep inside the lair of the Collector.
Thor, the God of Thunder and now King of Asgard, comes to the Collector asking for information about Thanos. The Collector explains that there are many stories about the Mad Titan’s origins. Few are true. Some think him a god. Some think him to be the devil. There is only one common thread among these legends.
He is in love with Lady Death herself.
Thor scoffs at the idea of Lady Death, calling her a fairytale. The Collector just shrugs and says that there is still much about the universe that they do not understand. Mortals once thought Thor to be a fairytale himself. Many across the cosmos believe that the fundamental forces of the universe – eternity, chaos, order and death – can take form and walk among us.
Their conversation is interrupted as an alarm begins to sound across Knowhere. A portal opens in the sky and the Chitauri descend like locusts. Leading the charge are Thanos’ elite soldiers: the Black Order.
The audience are introduced to each member of the Order as they tear apart Knowhere and we see that each one is armed with a sceptre designed to contain an Infinity Stone. The general audience doesn’t need to understand who the Black Order are (they’re more of an extended Easter Egg for comicbook fans) but we can see that the five members are:
- The Black Dwarf: an enormous reptilian monster with Hulk-like strength.
- Supergiant: a psychopathic wraith who can control gravity.
- The Ebony Maw: an immensely powerful telepath who can turn brother against brother with a single word.
- Proxima Midnight: the second in command, she is a warrior queen able to manifest and control lethal projectiles of light that never miss their mark.
- Last but not least is Corvus Glaive: Proxima’s husband and the leader of the Order who is nigh unstoppable thanks to his indestructible blade and his powerful healing factor.
The Collector is in a panic as he watches the slaughter from his bunker. Thor prepares to enter the battle and asks him who these monsters are. The Collector explains that they are Thanos’ adopted children. He knows that they’re here for one thing – his Infinity Stone. The Collector tries to escape with the Aether (aka. the Reality Stone) but before he can, Thor stabs him in the back. The illusion melts away and “Thor” is revealed to be none other than Loki.
The God of Mischief is holding a sceptre of his own which contains the Space Stone. We realise that it was Loki who used this stone to open a portal above Knowhere.
Loki has joined the Black Order.
Loki takes the Aether and drags the dying Collector out into the streets where the Black Order are waiting. Using the Space Stone, Loki opens another portal in the sky and like an angel of death, Thanos himself descends.
With the burning world as his backdrop, the Mad Titan pontificates about the beauty of what the Collector is about to experience. The beauty of death. However, as a final act of defiance the Collector simply responds:
“She will never love you.”
We get our first glimpse of Thanos’ power as he wipes out the Collector and a sizeable chunk of Knowhere in an instant.
He proceeds to crack open the Aether’s container and condenses it down into its solid form before inserting it into Corvus Glaive’s sceptre. The Mad Titan tells Loki and Corvus to make him proud.
For the first time, we see two stones used in unison as Loki and Corvus use the Space and Reality Stone to rip open a planet sized hole in the very fabric of the universe. The Black Order leaves on their ship as an endless swarm of colossal Cthulhu-like beings spill from the fault.
Aboard his ship, Thanos watches, smiling. He appears to be talking to empty air, promising an unseen woman that “they will be together soon”.
The enormous entities consume Knowhere, destroying it completely.
Marvel Cinematic Universe?
Meet the Dark Dimension.
2. Long Live the King
The real Thor wakes up on Asgard in a cold sweat. He is still having nightmares of his father’s death as well as the apocalyptic visions he received from Avengers: Age of Ultron. He wanders the palace alone until he reaches a statue of Odin. Thor stares mournfully at his late father until Bruce Banner joins him. Since Ragnarok, Banner has been staying in Asgard as Thor’s right hand man. Thor asks what he’s doing up and Banner just replies that he doesn’t really sleep that much. Thor opens up about how hard it is for him to live up to his father’s legacy. He’s not sure whether he can be even half the king that Odin was.
They are interrupted when one of the guards tells Thor that Heimdall is calling for him. It seems to be important. Thor and Banner meet with Heimdall on the Bifrost and are surprised to find Dr Stephen Strange there as well.
Both Heimdall and Strange look as if they’ve just seen a ghost. Strange tells Thor that they have much to discuss.
It seems that their universe is coming to an end.
3. The Galactic Council
We cut to Xandar where the Nova Corps have called a council of worlds. We get to catch up with the Guardians of the Galaxy as they arrive on Xandar and gleefully abuse their new celebrity status while they wait for the meeting to begin. Of course, this ends in a decadent night of binge drinking and gambling which means that they’re horribly late for the council meeting.
The Guardians arrive at the council meeting just as Nova Prime shows the gathered world leaders footage of the Dark Dimension entities consuming planet after planet. This new threat seems to be unstoppable. The council bicker amongst themselves about the best course of action until the door bursts open and Thor, King of Asgard strides into the chamber. At his side are Bruce Banner and Dr Strange.
Thor introduces Dr Strange to the council who explains that these creatures are the Many Angled Ones, ancient demonic entities controlled by the ruler of the Dark Dimension, Dormammu. It seems that the Dark Lord has sent the Many Angled Ones to consume this universe.
Thor puts the hammer down (figuratively), rallying the council with an inspiring speech that showcases his growth as a leader and king. They are not giving up their universe without a fight. Strange and Banner explain that they have formulated a plan and can close the fault provided they can get close enough. Finally, the council agrees to band together and form a Galactic Army.
After the meeting, Thor takes Starlord aside and tells him that even with the galaxy united, it might not be enough. He has suspicions that there is another force manipulating this war. Since Earth is Starlord’s home, Thor asks him to seek out the Avengers as they may be critical to the universe’s survival. He tells Starlord to find Tony Stark and Steve Rogers – Earth’s mightiest heroes. Starlord is hesitant at first. Since his mother’s death, he has been afraid to return home. However, after some encouragement from his friends, he agrees.
Peter Quill is going home.
4. The Dark War Begins
As the Guardians head to Earth, we see the assault on the Dark Dimension begin in a spectacular space battle. The Galactic Army throws everything it’s got at the Dark Dimension swarm as they try to break through the endless cloud of Many Angled Ones surrounding the fault.
The battle spills down onto a nearby planet where Thor, Hulk and Strange lead the charge. We really get to see the three powerhouses cut loose and do some major damage. However, the Dark Dimension is unstoppable and they are forced to retreat. Strange is shell shocked and has to be calmed down by Thor. The Doctor realises just how out of their depth they really are.
Meanwhile we see that Thanos is watching Xandar from his ship. The Chitauri descend upon Xandar and with most of the Nova Corps fighting the Dark Dimension, Thanos’ forces wreak utter havoc. Thanos watches as Proxima Midnight retrieves the Power Stone from the Nova Corps’ vault and uses it to destroy Xandar. The Mad Titan speaks once again to his unseen love, dedicating the destruction of this world to her.
5. Starlord Comes Home
The Guardians of the Galaxy finally arrive on Earth and land on the farm where Starlord grew up. The house is still there but it is unoccupied. We slow the pace a bit while Starlord walks through his old house and shares a tender moment with the other Guardians. They each talk briefly about the family members that they have loved and lost and how this has lead them to where they are today. Their quiet time is spoiled as they hear a voice telling them to come out of the house with their hands up. The Guardians go outside and look up to find a veritable army staring down at them.
Iron Man and Vision descend, backed up by an upgraded Iron Legion. Thanks to their translator chips, the Guardians can understand Tony as he orders them to surrender. A fight almost breaks out until Vision is able to calm things down. Vision takes a more diplomatic approach as he explains that Stark’s sensors picked up an unknown alien ship in their atmosphere. All they want to do is make sure that the Earth is safe. He reasons with Starlord, convincing Quill to surrender so as not to damage his childhood home.
Starlord talks his team into standing down and Tony officially places them under arrest.
1. The Guardians on Trial
Tony takes the Guardians to the Raft, the floating prison created by General Ross to house enhanced criminals. Tony meets with General Ross and Colonel James Rhodes, who is now able to walk with the assistance of his harness and cane. With Ross’ permission, Tony and Rhodes interrogate the Guardians one by one. However, each interrogation becomes more and more frustrating as the Guardians either insult or threaten Tony or just misunderstand his questions completely.
Only Quill takes it seriously as he tries to explain the threat that is coming towards Earth. It looks like he is getting through to Tony until all of the power on the Raft just shuts off. It’s revealed that Rocket casually shutdown the entire system allowing the rest of the Guardians bust into the interrogation room and knock out Tony with a makeshift taser. Quill is frustrated as he had almost gotten Tony on their side but it’s too late now. The Guardians steal back the Milano and escape the Raft.
Rocket urges Quill to cut their losses and leave Earth as clearly the Avengers are a bust. Quill disagrees, they’ve still got one more shot – they’ve still got Captain America.
2. The Secret Avengers
The Guardians use Mantis’ telepathy to track down Captain America’s hideout – a secret facility in the jungles of Wakanda as seen at the end of Civil War. As soon as the Milano lands, they are surrounded by the team of Captain America, Black Panther, Scarlet Witch, Ant Man, Falcon, Hawkeye and Black Widow. After a tense few moments, Scarlet Witch is able to verify that they are friendly which gives Peter Quill all the excuse he needs to completely fawn over his childhood hero, Captain America.
A slightly bewildered Steve welcomes them into the facility and we get to see the Guardians interact with Steve’s team. Rocket bonds with Scott Lang as he is genuinely amazed by Ant Man’s shrinking tech. Gamora and Black Widow immediately get along and compare their resumes. Hawkeye is absolutely dumbfounded by Groot and utterly fails at striking up a conversation despite his best efforts.
In the meeting room, Quill is able to compose himself and he gets serious, explaining the impending invasion to Cap and Black Panther. Scarlet Witch looks into his mind and is horrified to find that everything he is saying is true.
3. A Dish Best Served Cold
We see that Tony placed a robotic bug on Quill and has been tracking them since they left the Raft. Ross tells Tony that this confirms Wakanda is harbouring fugitives against the Accords. This gives Tony grounds to intervene on Wakandan soil. Tony is skeptical and does not want to cause an international incident.
However, as Quill walks through the facility with Cap, the bug reveals that Panther is keeping Bucky in stasis. Ross urges Tony to take his chance and avenge his father’s death. Rhodes tells Tony that whatever Tony’s decision, Rhodes will stand by him. He’s ready to get back in the suit if need be.
Stark returns to Avengers Tower and calls in everyone he can get his hands on. He calls Vision, Rhodey and even Peter Parker. He tells his team to prepare for war and unveils his new Vibranium laced suit created specifically for his inevitable rematch with Cap.
We see that a very familiar shield has been attached to its arm.
As the Avengers begin to suit up, Peter asks if he can speak with Tony alone. Peter tells Tony that he’s wanted to join the Avengers for so long but he has seen that look on Tony’s face before. It’s the same look that Peter had when he tried to avenge Uncle Ben’s death. Peter just wants to make sure they are going into this fight for the right reasons. Tony just brushes Peter off and tells him to get ready.
It’s time to finish this Civil War once and for all.
4. Fall of the Gods
The Galactic Army is still putting up a fight against the Dark Dimension but word soon reaches them of Xandar’s fall. The Nova Corp falls into disarray, allowing the Dark Dimension to wipe out much of their fleet.
As the alliance descends into chaos, Thor receives a distress call from Asgard. He calls for Heimdall but there is no response. Thor realises that the Dark Dimension is just a distraction. He takes Hulk and Strange with him and they leave the battle on their fastest ship.
We cut to Asgard to see the Chitauri swarming over the Bifrost Bridge as Heimdall makes his desperate last stand. He is single handedly able to hold off the Chitauri and the Black Order until he is overwhelmed and seriously wounded. The Order bring Heimdall to Thanos who has seated himself upon Thor’s throne. Thanos asks the gatekeeper what he sees when he looks at the Mad Titan. Heimdall glares at Thanos and then sees something that the audience cannot. Something – or someone – is standing at Thanos’ side. Heimdall is both horrified and awestruck.
His last words are “She is beautiful.”
Thanos just smiles and incinerates Heimdall with a single blast.
5. For Myself
Thor, Dr Strange and Hulk arrive to find Asgard in ruin. Together, the heroes take the fight to the Chitauri army lead by the Black Dwarf. They decimate much of the fleet and Hulk is able to kill the Black Dwarf, ripping him clean in half. However, their victory is short lived as the rest of the Black Order arrive. They restrain Strange and Thor before draining Hulk’s energy with the Infinity Stones. The Hulk reverts back to Bruce Banner which leaves the heroes at the Black Order’s mercy.
They are brought before Thanos just as Loki emerges from Odin’s treasure room with the Soul Stone. Thanos gives the stone to Supergiant who prepares to avenge the death of her brethren. Thor curses Loki for betraying his people and destroying their father’s legacy.
However, Loki chooses this moment to reveal his true colours. He uses the Space Stone to open a portal to the Dark Dimension warzone. Proxima Midnight and Corvus Glaive are forced to leave and hold off the Many Angled Ones that begin to swarm over Asgard. Taking advantage of this distraction, Loki stabs Supergiant in the back and takes her stone. Now he faces off against Thanos, wielding the Space Stone in one hand and the Soul Stone in the other.
Thanos just laughs and tells Loki to do his worst.
Thanos completely outclasses Loki, constantly redirecting or deflecting everything Loki throws at him until the Trickster collapses from exhaustion. The Mad Titan taunts Loki, explaining that his body cannot handle the strain of using two stones at the same time. This is the reason why Thanos has allowed the Order to use his Infnity Stones as only with all six in perfect balance can one attain true godhood.
Despite his apparent exhaustion, Loki struggles to his feet and surprises Thanos with an enormous blast from both stones, shattering the Mad Titan’s armor and sending him flying. With Thanos stunned for the moment, Loki breaks Thor’s restraints and Thor hugs his brother, overjoyed that he has come to his senses. Thor is ecstatic and says that the sons of Odin can fight together again. They will make their father proud. Loki just smiles and knocks Thor out with the Infinity Stones. He tells Banner and Strange to take Thor and run. Loki will deal with Thanos himself.
Strange and Banner carry Thor to the Bifrost Bridge as Loki holds back Thanos. The Mad Titan quickly overwhelms the exhausted Loki and beats him to a pulp.
Thanos lifts Loki’s broken body by the throat and asks why Loki betrayed him, throwing a chance at true godhood away.
For Asgard? For Odin? For Thor?
Loki just laughs and whispers his final words.
Loki unleashes both the power of the Soul Stone and the Space Stone in a massive explosion, taking Thanos and half of Asgard with him as Thor, Strange and Hulk escape through the Bifrost Bridge.
As the smoke clears, we see that Thanos is lying amidst the rubble, staring up at the sky. At first, it appears that he is dead but he looks to his side and for a moment, we see the blurred outline of a woman. A distorted voice tells Thanos that it’s not his time yet. Thanos smiles.
There’s still work to be done.
Thanos rises, bloodied but not defeated. He retrieves the Soul Stone from the wreckage as the Ebony Maw arrives and asks what their next move is. Thanos gives the Maw the Soul Stone and then places the Space Stone into his gauntlet.
It’s time for the Black Order to pay Earth a visit.
6. The Brink of War
Tony’s Avengers arrive outside the Wakandan facility along with the full Iron Legion including the Hulkbuster. Stark demands that Panther give up the fugitives, including the Winter Soldier. Panther, Cap and Quill reveal themselves and try to talk sense into Tony. It’s useless as Tony doesn’t want to hear it. Either they surrender now, or Tony takes them all down.
The two teams stand off and charge but before they can collide, a beam of multicoloured light crashes into the middle of the battlefield.
All of the heroes stop in their tracks as Thor, Strange and Banner crawl from the crater left by the damaged Bifrost. An injured Thor is able to get out three words before a portal opens up above them:
Thanos is coming.
1. Infinity War
Moments after Thor arrives, the Black Order and an army of Chitauri descend upon Wakanda. A massive battle ensues and even though the Order is weakened from their fight with the Dark Dimension, they are able to dominate the heroes. Corvus destroys the Iron Legion with ease and completely rips apart the Hulkbuster. In the ensuing chaos, Proxima impales and disintegrates Yondu much to the shock of the Guardians. They have no time to mourn his loss as they are all forced to retreat into the jungle, scattered and completely out of their depth. Corvus is in his element as he cackles madly and tells the Black Order to hunt them down like the dogs they are.
Everything starts to break down as the Order sweeps over Wakanda, burning the jungle to ash around them. Nebula panics and flees despite Gamora’s pleas for her to stay and fight. Nebula just says that they are all doomed. She steals one of the Black Order’s ships and flies as far away from Earth as she can, abandoning her sister and the other Guardians.
Dr Strange sees that they are losing the battle and he teleports back to the Kamar Taj to retrieve the Time Stone.
When he arrives, he finds Kamar Taj in ruin.
Thanos is waiting for him.
2. Out of Time
The Mad Titan reveals that the use of the Time Stone to stop Dormammu released enough energy for Thanos to track the stone’s whereabouts. Remember, as Mordo once told Strange, actions have consequences. It was Stephen Strange that ultimately brought Thanos to Kamar Taj. An enraged Dr Strange throws everything he’s got at Thanos, who just laughs it off. Thanos easily demolishes Strange, severely injuring him and leaving him for dead.
With no one left to stop him, the Mad Titan takes the Time Stone for himself. Now with the Time Stone and the Space Stone both embedded in his gauntlet, he grins and disappears in a flash of blue light.
3. Avengers Assembled
The battle is going badly for the Avengers as Glaive injures several heroes before he turns his attention to Tony. He moves in for the kill but Rhodes throws himself in front of Glaive’s attack. Horrified, Tony retreats and takes the fatally wounded Rhodes with him.
Rhodey dies in Tony’s arms just as a squad of Chitauri attack. Before Tony can be killed, the original Avengers come to Tony’s aid. Spurred by Rhodey’s sacrifice, Tony reconciles with Cap and gives the shield back to its rightful owner. Cap raises the shield into the air and at last, he’s able to say the words we’ve all been waiting to here.
Finally, the Avengers unite. Now that Tony and Cap are cooperating and calling the shots, the separate teams rally and begin working together.
Throughout the burning jungle, the heroes pair up and begin to fight back. Spider-Man and Starlord, Falcon and Panther, Thor and Drax, Hulk and Groot, all manner of unlikely alliances are formed. Hawkeye and Widow reconcile and are able to infiltrate a Chitauri ship, causing major damage to the fleet while Cap retreats into the facility to unleash the Winter Soldier who shows off his new Vibranium arm by simply punching straight through a Chitauri. Bucky and Cap reunite and begin to rip through the Chitauri with ease.
Meanwhile, Vision takes on both Proxima Midnight and Corvus Glaive by himself. Inspired by his bravery, Scarlet Witch joins his side and together they are able to send the pair into retreat. As they fight together, Vision finally confesses his feelings for Wanda.
The heroes slowly gain the advantage and with a series of coordinated attacks, the heroes are able to surround the Black Order. Tony avenges his best friend by killing Corvus Glaive and the Guardians avenge Yondu by killing Proxima Midnight. Vision takes both their sceptres. Now with three stones in his possession, Vision obliterates the Chitauri fleet and brings the last remaining member of the Order, the Ebony Maw to his knees.
However, just as it looks like victory is in sight, Thanos appears with the Time Stone and the Space Stone. He waves his hand and our heroes all disappear into thin air.
4. Infinity Gauntlet
They find themselves suddenly transported to Asgard which is still overrun by the Dark Dimension. Before the Many Angled Ones can devour the Avengers and Guardians, everything and everyone freezes in place.
Thanos looms into view, the Time Stone glowing brightly upon his gauntlet. At his side is the Ebony Maw, who bows to Thanos and gives him the Soul Stone. The Avengers and the Guardians are helpless but before Thanos can finish them off, Vision is able to break free from the time stop using his own Infinity Stones. Vision and Thanos charge at each other and the final battle for the Infinity Stones begins.
The furious battle rips apart the landscape but the two seem evenly matched. Slowly, Vision begins to gain the advantage … until the Ebony Maw puts a knife to the Scarlet Witch’s throat. Thanos tells Vision to surrender or she dies.
Wanda urges Vision to keep fighting but he knows that he has lost. He makes a bargain with Thanos – Vision will surrender but the Mad Titan must swear an oath upon the Infinity Stones to spare Earth and its inhabitants. After a moment’s contemplation, Thanos agrees. He promises that everyone on Earth will not only be safe but will also be under his protection. Vision gives Thanos the Power and Reality stones and they glow as Thanos inserts them into his gauntlet, binding Thanos to his word. Vision kisses Wanda, mournfully bidding her goodbye before he turns back to Thanos and tells him to get it over with.
Thanos laughs and tells Vision that they are not so different. They will both do anything for the woman they love.
Finally, the Mad Titan rips the Mind Stone from Vision’s forehead, killing him. He places the last stone into his palm.
At last, the Infinity Gauntlet is complete.
Scarlet Witch is enraged by Vision’s death and she unleashes her full power, shattering the time freeze on the Avengers, the Guardians and the Many Angled Ones. She unloads an immense blast at Thanos as the Avengers, the Guardians and even the Many Angled Ones attack him all at once. Thanos shrugs off all their attacks as if they were a light breeze. With a wave of his hand, he incinerates the Many Angled Ones and crushes all of the heroes to the ground, forcing them to kneel before him.
As they struggle to rise under the immense pressure of Thanos’ power, he takes the time to gloat. They very well might be the galaxy’s mightiest heroes. But despite their strength, their cunning and their bravery, it was all pointless. Their defeat was inevitable. Death is inevitable.
And now, so is Thanos.
Before he can continue, Thanos is cut off by laughter. He is surprised to find Steve Rogers chuckling to himself amidst the rubble. Curious, Thanos releases his hold on Rogers and lets him stand.
Thanos asks Cap just what he finds so funny. Cap stands tall, face to face with a god beyond gods and smirks. He calls Thanos a fool.
Steve makes one last speech before slugging the Mad Titan in the face.
Now it’s Thanos’ turn to laugh. He tells Cap that he promised to spare everyone on Earth. But they’re not on Earth.
Thanos shatters the shield with a single blow before turning Cap to ash. Tony, Falcon and Bucky scream in anguish as the other heroes watch in stunned silence. Satisfied with his work, the Mad Titan disappears, leaving the heroes utterly defeated.
Thanos has won.
5. At Death’s Door
Thanos arrives at the Fault with the Ebony Maw at his side. He wipes out the Many Angled Ones across the galaxy with a click of his fingers and then closes the rip in reality. Finally, Thanos creates an entire planet from nothing. As he sits atop his new throne, for the first time we see Lady Death at his side.
One last time, Thanos smiles and we cut to the credits.
We see that a Kree ship has survived the Dark War. It begins heading towards Earth which sets up for Captain Marvel.
This leads us right into the finale of the saga, Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2 aka. Avengers: Secret Wars.
If anyone is insane enough to read all that, I’d love to know your thoughts and read about your own ideas for Infinity War!